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Alternate History

Battle of Cordoba Line (Different Alliances)

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== Battle of Cordoba line==

Prelude to the battle

In summer 1936, Soviet Union sent military support to Republican Spain. Few days after arriving, soviet units went to their first clash against fascist forces. It was near on Cordoba defense line, in southern Spain. Soviet forces were under commanding of Combrig Navrchov and Shevchenkova, fascist commanders are unknown.
Soviet goal was to defend line and halt fascist offensive to save Cordoba from enemy attack. Fascist goal was to break through soviet defense lines, eliminate republican resistance and capture strategic important Cordoba.
Both sides were very different and soviets had many advantages and helps, on other side, fascist had more soldiers and elite paratroopers commando.

The Battle

Battle of Cordoba line

Date August 8, 1936
Result Decisive Soviet victory
Belligerents

Soviet Union

Nazi Germany

Nationalist Spain

Commanders

Combrig A. Navrchov (W.I.A.)
Combat S. Budyonny (K.I.A.)
Combat N. Shevchenkova (K.I.A.)
Combrig Levandovsky (W.I.A.)

Col. Martin Stoewer (W.I.A.)
Col. Miguel Valasquez (K.I.A.)

Strength
1642 men,
ten mortars,
25 heavy machine guns,
five batteries of 36 mm artillery, six T-26 and four BT-5's
7,000 fascist soldiers, 800 German paratroopers, 15 Pz-I, ten Pz-II's
Casualties and losses
139 killed,
162 WIA
four mortars, seven heavy machine guns nest, one artillery battery, one T-26 and two BT-5's

4625 killed,
2566 WIA
500 captured
Few escaped

At peak of day, soviet units fortified on "Cordoba defense line" near important industrial and trade city Cordoba. Soviet commander Andrei Navrchov gave orders to secure perimeters and established commanding outpost.
Commanding over left-wing of defense gave to commander of brigade Levandovski. Commanding over right-wing of defense gave to commander of battalion Shevchenkova. Commander of battalion Budyonny gathered his cavalry elite forces.
On Navrchov order, soviet tanks hide behind rocks and trees.
Meanwhile, col. Stoewer prepared his paratroopers to ambush action against soviet units. In coordination with commander Miguel Valasquez, commander of Spanish Fascists, he did the last preparation. Valasquez choose old-time mass wave tactic. Stoewer urged him to do not use this tactic and just support German ambush. Valasquez did not heard about it and gave order to start frontal attack.
Soviet soldiers gave order to start shooting on thousands targets, when fascist get their sight. Combrig Navrchov gave order to "fire-at-will" and himself with rifle Mosin-Nagant 1936/22 start shooting against fascists.
Budyonny prepared his comrades to help, but he got order to wait until real danger for defense line.
After few minutes of fight, Stoewer lost his nerves and gave order to ambush attack. Soviet soldiers killed more then 4000 Fascist troops, but they were ambushed from left-side by elite paratrooper SS commandos.
Surprising ambush led to heavy casualties in soviet ranks and wound. In the final moment, when SS soldiers thought they won over soviets and when morale of soviet soldiers and officers fall down, Budyonny elite red cavalry attacked behind Nazi paratroopers.
Cavalry unit surprised German troops and killed many of them. SS paratrooper unit lost 621 soldiers of 800 soldiers. Commander Stoewer capitulated and soviet troops secured whole area under Cordoba defense line.
However, during cleaning area under Cordoba defense line, commander Budyonny, legendary hero of Russian civil war and bolshevik armies, died. He was shot by Fascist soldier to head and died in his uniform with all medals and insignias.

Aftermath

In battle died 139 soviet soldiers and officers(include combat Shevchenkova and Budyonny) and 162 were wounded(include combrig Navrchov and Levandovski). Soviets lost three tanks thanks to enemy artillery fire from unknown position.
Casualties on Fascist side was worse. 4625 killed men, 2566 wounded, ca. 500 captured and just few dozens escaped or deserted/defected.
For republican soldiers and soviets, it was decisive and great victory. But Germans and fascist morale fall down on zero cold point.

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